Pacquiao celebrates Sunday Mass after Bradley loss
By Rich Mazon
Mon, 11 Jun 2012
Las Vegas, NV – The site of a beltless and defeated Manny Pacquiao has not been a familiar scene for everyone who attends the mass after every fight of his here in Las Vegas. People are accustomed to seeing the now former WBO welterweight champ fresh from a victory the night before these traditional Thanksgiving masses.
Not this time, Pacquiao is now devoid of a belt and a win after last night’s controversial loss to his challenger Timothy Bradley. But that did not stop Pacquiao, his family, close friends and supporters in attending yesterday’s Thanksgiving mass. He arrived in a sea of cheers and applause from the crowd. “Ikaw pa rin ang champion para sa amin,” an elderly fan yelled.
The mass that started around eleven in the morning was also officiated by Fr. Marlon Beof. There was a leaner crowd here today compared to yesterday before his fight with Bradley and his other post fight masses in the past.
Pacquiao said a prayer of thanks that he and his opponent were safe and free from harm from the fight the night before. “Thank you Lord that you kept us safe and to all the blessings that you gave to us and for giving the people a good fight,” he pleaded.
He also asked his fans to accept the results of last Saturday’s fight. “At sa lahat naman ng mga kababayan ko, wag nating damdamin at kailangan ipakita natin sa Panginoon na mas nag-increase pa yung faith natin sa Panginoon. Ipakita natin na ito ay maliit na pagsubok sa atin.” (To my fellow Filipinos, let us not get dismayed by this. Let us show God that our faith will increase even more. This is just a small test for all of us.) He said with his head vowed.
Pacquiao was somber during the whole mass but smiled after seeing his daughter Queenie go in front of the crowd and started dancing while gospel songs are being sung by the choir. He took out his phone and started taking pictures and videotaping his youngest daughter as Queenie danced as the choir sang.
Kirby Asunto who sang the Philippine National Anthem led the choir in singing during the Eucharistic mass and also sang a very touching duet of “The Prayer” after the conclusion of the service.
Pacquiao addressed the crowd afterwards and thanked them for their continued support. “Napakasaya ko kahit na talo tayo sa dalawang tao doon sa ring, yung dalawang judges sa ballpen. But we rejoice because we are winners in God’s sight. Masaya tayo dahil panalo tayo sa puso ng Panginoon.” (I am happy that even I lost in the eyes of two persons in the ring, we are winners in God’s sight.) he told the crowd. The crowd reacted to it with cheers but also with protests, stating that he really won the fight. “Hindi, hindi!, panalo tayo.” (No, No. We won.) the same elderly man yelled again.
He also congratulated fellow boxer Ernie Sanchez who won his separate fight on the undercards last night. Pacquiao encouraged his supporters and told them that “God has a better plan for me.” he told the crowd. “Rejoice, walang problema. Happy dapat tayo, nandito tayo sa Las Vegas.” (Rejoice, no problem. Let us be happy, we are here in Vegas.” he said jokingly.
Pacquiao then returned to his suite to do media interviews with various Filipino television outlets that were waiting for him. He also attended a local Christian gathering here in Las Vegas afterwards in the afternoon.
Photo: Manny Pacquiao takes photos on his daughter, Queenie, dancing during the Sunday farewell mass held at the Mandalay Bay Hotel in Las Vegas. Photo by Jhay Otamias.
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